ALCOHOL: TRICK OR TREAT BY LADY BUNNY
By Lady Bunny
There may be a hurricane raging in Manhattan, but I’m celebrating! Two years from this past Saturday, I completely quit drinking. And I’ll never drink again. I didn’t go to a program, but told myself that I would go if I couldn’t stop on my own. Also, my goal was not to be completely sober, since I enjoy taking drugs on occasion. But booze was a problem. It’s an occupational hazard–everyone wants to see the drag queen smashed. For some reason, crowds cheer when a queen slams a beer or does multiple shots onstage and I was happy to oblige. Paid to drink! The drinks were free and outrageous behavior was encouraged by my bosses.
But blacking out, unexplained bruises and even broken bones became a little too outrageous for me. And two years ago, I was djing at Hotel Zaza in Houston for Hallowe’en. They say that when your drinking interferes with your work, you have a real problem. I was supposed to spin until 2AM but there was a costume contest at 1:30AM which bored me. I was recovering from knee surgery and a pain pill had made me extra high. I was in my “I’ll just stick to wine” phase, but if you have a problem with alcohol it doesn’t matter whether it’s hard liquor or beer. So I blacked out at 1:30 and went up to my hotel room–or so I was told. Apparently, they came knocking at my door and I barked “Go way!” and went to bed.
The next morning, I flew home very early without speaking to anyone at the hotel. My head was in my hands for most of the flight home because not only had a blown a great gig which enabled me to make 2 months rent in one night for several years, I also feared that I’d jeopardized the position of a dear friend who had gotten me the gig who worked at Zaza. And once again, I didn’t know what had happened because I was so blasted. Had I rudely mouthed off at some of the wealthy republicans who were talking politics and european real estate right next to my dj booth? Had I had sex with the guy who I had invited to the party? Was it safe sex? I had no clue.
I got home and emailed the club that while I’d been paid 1/2 as a deposit, I would not accept one more dime from them and I fully understood if they never wanted to work with me again–because I was out of control. A few days passed and I didn’t hear back. I was shitting bricks thinking that they were too revolted by me–it is a fancy hotel–to even respond. My friends had filled me in on my leaving the dj decks for my hotel room so I at least knew that I hadn’t been caught on my knees in a bathroom stall. Finally, Zaza responded. They said “We love you, Bunny, and we look forward to seeing you next year.” Honey! I must have made a few deposits into the bank of karma because I made a serious withdrawal that night. I’m thrilled to say that I’ve spun at their Hallowe’en parties every year since then, and both years they have rehired me the day afterward because it’s gone so well.
It took me a long time to hit rock bottom–in fact, there were many rock bottoms before that which were more tragic, and in retrospect, hilarious. For the most part, I was a fun drunk–not weepy or violent. And I partied all over the world with some amazing people. I still can–just without the guzzling. And unlike some former drunks, I don’t frown on people who enjoy getting tanked. How could I? I work in clubs where they sell liquor! I occasionally wish that I could enjoy a few drinks responsibly like most people can, but it’s not possible for me and it took me decades to learn that. The lucky part is that I’m not inhibited, so I never needed booze to be that crutch. In fact, people often think I’m lit when they see me out because I’m so insane!
But if I can get preachy for one minute…We all have friends who engage in destructive behaviors–whether it’s unsafe sex, addictions, whatever. I think a lot of us need to be better friends and call out those who are dear to us when we see them on a path to ruining their lives. In my bohemian set, people think it’s uncool to be responsible or concerned and say “Girl, you’ve been blacked out every time I’ve seen you for months. I’m worried about you. Do you need to talk with me about this or get help?” But it is never, ever, ever uncool to show concern for a friend who needs it. And don’t you dare all post that you are concerned about all the fattening foods I’m eating cuz I am working on that too, bitches! One addiction at a time. And yes, I’m aware that facebook is my latest obsession. But give me a break on that one today–there’s a f#cking hurricane outside! So I’m at home celebrating two years of not drinking–with a few drinks. KIDDING!
If you are seeking help with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, start with a Texas detox center for help.”